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Says measures are being put in place to stop proliferation of substandard cough medications in the country.

NAFDAC DG, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has assured Nigerians that measures have been put in place at various entry ports into the country to prevent contaminated cough syrups.

NAFDAC Director-General, Prof Mojisola Adeyeye, disclosed this on Tuesday in Abuja at a news conference.

NAFDAC had on Sunday through their website, issued an alert with No. 040/2022 about some contaminated cough syrups circulating in the Gambia.

It also reports that the syrups were identified as Promethazine Oral Solution, Kofexmalin Baby Cough Syrup, Makoff Baby Cough Syrup and Magrip N Cold Syrup.

The syrups were said to have been manufactured by an Indian company, Maiden Pharmaceuticals, and had failed to provide guarantees about the safety of the cough syrups.

Moreover, the NAFDAC boss said that the agency had put appropriate measures at the various entry ports to prevent the information of these syrups into the country.

She added that NAFDAC had activated its internal surveillance mechanisms to mop up these products from the supply chain pipeline if they were ever found.

Adeyeye further said that as a member of the World Health Organisation (WHO) programme on International drug monitoring, NAFDAC would leave no stone unturned in ensuring that these products did not cause harm to Nigerians.

She explained that the cough syrups had killed 66 children in Gambia and that interviews conducted on the bereaved parents in the Gambia by health authorities and law enforcement agencies revealed how their children were not able to pass urine after taking the syrups.“Diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol are restricted chemicals which are toxic to humans when consumed and can prove fatal.

“These chemicals are closely related in chemical structure to propylene glycol which is the right vehicle for use in the manufacture of paediatric syrups.

“Poor quality control might have led to non-detection of these dangerous products and hence the fatality we have on our hands in the Gambia,” she added.

The NAFDAC boss however informed Nigerians that the four cough syrups in question were not registered by the agency and called on the public to be cautious about them.

She also implored importers, distributors, retailers and consumers to be very vigilant within the supply chain to avoid importation, distribution, sales and use of deadly cough syrups.

She went further to say that all medical products must be obtained from authorised/licensed suppliers, adding that the product authenticity and physical condition should also be carefully checked.

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